From 28 April 2022 to 18 September 2022
Art and Nature from Arte Povera to today. From the Collections of the Fondazione per l’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT at Castello di Rivoli
drafted by Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Marcella Beccaria, and Samuele Piazza
Works by Mario Merz (Milan, 1925–2003), Marisa Merz (Turin, 1926–2019), Michelangelo Pistoletto (Biella, 1933), Giovanni Anselmo (Borgofranco d’Ivrea, Turin, 1934), Jannis Kounellis (Piraeus, 1936 – Rome, 2017), Piero Gilardi (Turin, 1942), Pier Paolo Calzolari (Bologna, 1943), Gilberto Zorio (Andorno Micca, Vercelli, 1944), Richard Long (Bristol, 1945), Giuseppe Penone (Garessio, Cuneo, 1947), Amar Kanwar (New Delhi, 1964), Agnieszka Kurant (Łódź, 1978)
“From the knots of the wood you can see from which side the tree soared in the sky, which side of it absorbed the southern light, whether it was born in a crowded forest, in a meadow or on the edge of the forest,” wrote Giuseppe Penone in 1970. In parallel with other international artists active from the end of the Sixties of the last century, Arte Povera artists investigated the reality of physical experience and channelled the invisible energy flowing through the world into their artworks. They used elementary techniques and common materials to bridge the gap between nature and culture. With their works they introduced the basic concepts of contemporary ecology. Skeptical of the acceleration of consumer society, they were aware of the need for a new environmental balance between humans and the world.
Thirty years later, climate change caused by the excessive exploitation
of energy resources (and the consequent global warming) changed the world. Many artists globally became documentary makers and social and climate justice activists in the 2000s, such as Amar Kanwar whose The Sovereign Forest explores the devastation of agricultural areas and the disappearance of biodiversity in India. More recently, younger artists such as Agnieszka Kurant seek forms of symbiotic multi-species co-evolution through collective intelligence, able to impact on climate change.
Jointly organized by OGR and Castello di Rivoli, this exhibition brings together works mostly belonging to the collections of the Fondazione per l’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT. Thanks to the synergy between the Museum and the Foundation, this process has allowed Turin and Piedmont to build one of the most significant collections of contemporary art in the world in just over twenty years, and to share it with our community.